I am a retired octogenarian with graduate level college education, albeit dated, who has endured national crises of many kinds but never in all my years witnessed a financial crisis like the one we’re in now. Every bell of foreboding available to the dominate media sounds the high note of meltdown and catastrophe. People in the know speak and write stuff about bundling and swapping that I can’t understand and point accusing fingers in every direction of the causal compass. The Treasury secretary mournfully submits a three-page solution keyed to legalizing extortion. Professionals of every stripe analyze and analogize. Congress in characteristically spineless fashion approved a humongous cash bailout (or handout) that may or may not help.
Take this newspaper sub-headline regarding the speedily passed absurd and mystifying Congressional bailout: “Consumers will decide if economy’s in for seismic shift or timeout” (San Francisco Chronicle, Oct. 5). It seems to say that we, you and I, are in charge of the economy, a patent absurdity. It also implies two different metaphoric characterizations for our man-made but not man-controlled economy. It is a geographic entity on which our well-being is subject to seismic dislocation, and it is a game in which we can, if we want to, stop playing and take a rest.
In short, nothing I’ve heard or read makes sense except that you and I, our children and grandchildren, will be obliged to buy our way out of the deep mess caused by the neglect, greed and venality of our financial and political leaders.